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Bellini and Giorgione in the House of Taddeo Contarini at Frick Madison, November 9, 2023 – February 4, 2024 

“This fall and winter, visitors to Frick Madison, the temporary home of The Frick Collection, will have an unprecedented opportunity to view two Renaissance masterpieces reunited for the first time in more than four hundred years. 

Giorgione’s Three Philosophers, on rare loan from Vienna’s Kunsthistorisches Museum, will be shown in dialogue with the Frick’s beloved St. Francis in the Desert by Giovanni Bellini. The works were owned by the same Venetian collector, Taddeo Contarini (ca. 1466–1540), and were displayed for many decades in his palazzo before their separation centuries ago.” — Frick Madison

Giovanni Bellini (c. 1430 – 1516). St. Francis in the Desert, 1480. Oil and tempera on poplar panel, 49 in. x 55 7/8 in. (124.46 cm x 141.92 cm). Henry Clay Frick Bequest. Accession number: 1915.1.03
Giorgio da Castelfranco, known as Giorgione (ca. 1477–1510). The Three Philosophers, ca. 1508–9. Oil on canvas. 49 7/16 x 57 9/16 in. (125.5 x 146.2 cm). Kunsthistorisches Museum, Vienna Photo: KHM-Museumsverband

Comments Ian Wardropper, Anna-Maria and Stephen Kellen Director of the Frick, “It would be difficult to think of a more fitting conclusion for our temporary residency at Frick Madison than this once-in-a-lifetime installation. These two complex Renaissance paintings have prompted an enormous amount of commentary over the years, and we are delighted to present the pair together as an exciting farewell to this fascinating chapter in our institution’s history.”

This special presentation is organized by Xavier F. Salomon, Deputy Director and Peter Jay Sharp Chief Curator, who is authoring an accompanying book about the paintings and their original owner and his collection. Salomon states, “To this day, Taddeo Contarini is best known for his ownership of two masterpieces of Venetian Renaissance painting. Despite the attention that has been lavished on the paintings from his collection, Contarini remains an elusive figure, one we can understand only through some glimmers of information about him. The reunion of these two paintings brings an important part of Contarini’s collection back to life.”

Title image: Installation view of Bellini and Giorgione in the House of Taddeo Contarini. Photo: Joseph Coscia Jr.

Images courtesy Frick Madison.

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